Thursday, 31 July 2014

Lakeland 50 - Kentmere Institute to Ambleside Parish Hall

I like the stretch from Kentmere to Ambleside.  There's a climb up and out of Kentmere along the Garburn Path and then a nice runnable stretch over and down to Troutbeck.  I found myself on my own for a lot of this stage.

On the climb up from Kentmere was another 100 miler who was plodding along determinedly.  I passed him close to the top and trotted off towards Troutbeck.  A youngish woman was a bit in front of me but I was happy to trot along at my own pace and she gradually disappeared from view.  Rounding a corner, I caught sight of her again as she hit a fork in the path.  She looked like she was about to head off along the wrong fork so I bellowed "Turn Right" as loud as I could.  Didn't mean to give her a fright but she ended up slowing down and running along with me until we got into Troutbeck.

She left me behind again and I trotted on along Robin Lane bridleway on my way to Ambleside.  It was beginning to get a bit darker now and the first spots of rain began to fall.  I hoped to make it to the next checkpoint before I had to get my head torch and waterproofs out.  Protected by the cover of trees for much of this section, I didn't get too wet, although it was getting darker quite quickly now.

I was looking out for a signposted gate on the left and got a bit concerned when it was nowhere in sight.  I was beginning to think that maybe I'd overshot it and was heading in the wrong direction.  There was no one else around and I seriously considered turning back to see if anyone else was coming.  After giving myself a bit of a talking to and pulling up my big girl pants, I carried on and, wouldn't you know it, the gate appeared around the very next bend.  I knew where I was now and trotted along happily.

I was joined by a group of three 100 milers for a short time but as the rain came down a bit harder they stopped to get out waterproofs.  I carried on hoping to not have to get my head torch out until I got to the checkpoint.

It was pretty dingy running through Skelhyll woods but it's only for a short distance.  I took my time and hoped I wouldn't trip and fall on my way through.  Made it through and then I was heading into the centre of Ambleside.

Running through Ambleside was awesome.  Even though it was chucking it down, people were still out on the street clapping and cheering the runners as we passed through.  Someone clocked my Clayton Vest and shouted "Go Clayton" which was great.  I felt like a superstar and it was probably my fastest and best bit of running through the whole race. It was brilliant and I don't think I will ever forget it.

Up the main road, under the arch and past Ghyllside cycles.  I was at the Parish Centre before I knew it and dibbed in.

The rain was really lashing down now so it was decision time.  Waterproofs or not? Even though it was now dark and raining heavily, the temperature was still pretty high.  Waterproofs were looking increasingly sensible, but I knew that it would also be a bit boil in the bag. The next leg takes you up and over the back of Loughrigg and is a little exposed in places so I decided that waterproofs were my most sensible option.  I got my dry top on and added waterproofs over the top.  Oh man, I was hot but it was lashing it down out there.

No comments: